Archive for the ‘jihad’ Category

How India fumbled response to Mumbai attack

December 4, 2008

It took 10 minutes for word of the Nov. 26 , Mumbai terror assaults to reach the top of the government of Maharashtra state, but nearly 10 hours for India‘s best commando team to reach the scene.

That delay may help to explain why it took three days for India’s security forces to overpower 10 assailants who police say killed at least 188 people and wounded more than 280.

By Padma Rao Sundarji, McClatchy Newspapers

Indecision by politicians and the delay in launching the commando force, however, don’t fully account for the extent of the slaughter, which now threatens to escalate into conflict between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan , where the attacks are thought to have been planned.

“This was not the fault of any one organ of the security apparatus, but a systemic failure,” said Arun Bhagat , a former chief of India’s Intelligence Bureau , India’s main domestic intelligence agency.

Indian officials ignored advance intelligence warnings. Police officers ran away from the scenes of carnage because they lacked weapons, and their bulletproof vests were said to be defective. The Indian coast guard doesn’t have night vision equipment, much less the more advanced human detection gear used by China , Japan and other countries.

India’s security agencies are now rushing to point the finger at each other.

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Indian Media In Total Disbelief At Pakistan’s Denials On Mumbai

December 4, 2008

Newspapers and other media in India are expressing the opinion heard from the “man on the street,” that Pakistan is to blame completely and entirely for the recent terrorism within India, including the Mumbai bloodshed last week.

This picture released by the Press Information Department shows ... 
This picture released by the Press Information Department shows Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari (R) talking with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice during a meeting in Islamabad. The White House on Thursday called on Pakistan to “act with resolve, urgency” in cooperating with India on the probe into attacks in Mumbai that stoked tension between the nuclear rivals.(AFP/PID)


From the Times of India

….The government feels the attack this time was meticulously planned, with the help of top intelligence inputs and professional support. It thinks that it’s unlikely the Indian fishing trawler Kuber was hijacked. A well-planned attack mission like this would not depend on the off-chance of hijacking a boat for its success. Rather, the Indian crew of the boat were probably mixed up in smuggling and got sucked into this deadly game. And paid with their lives.

The government knows the attack originated from Pakistan. In fact, the Pakistan government doesn’t deny this. Even now when Asif Ali Zardari is telling Larry King that the attackers are “stateless people”, he isn’t saying they are not Pakistanis. Earlier, foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, who was in India when the attack took place, told the media he was willing to send the ISI chief for a joint probe, signaling that he believed the attackers were Pakistanis.

When Manmohan Singh called up Zardari and Pakistan PM Gilani, both said the ISI director general Shuja Pasha would be sent to India to help out with the investigations. But by evening, the picture had changed. An ISI spokesman sounded very iffy about Pasha’s visit. “Let the government tell us and we’ll see,” he said.

In short, the ISI was telling the civilian government to get off. Meanwhile, the Pakistan army sounded a warning about an Indian military build-up along the border. Newspapers close to the army, like Pakistan Observer and Frontier Post, and TV channel Geo, played up this alleged build-up. Suddenly, the popular mood was turning — from a sense of outrage at the Mumbai killings to alarm about a possible Indian attack.

Pakistani students of Islami Jamiat-e-Tulba burn an Indian flag ... 
Pakistani students of Islami Jamiat-e-Tulba burn an Indian flag during a protest in Multan. Pakistan has promised US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that it will take “strong action” against anyone on its territory found to have been involved in the Mumbai attacks.(AFP/Mohammad Malik)

Why did the Pakistan army do this? First, to deflect attention from the Mumbai attack into which the ISI was being dragged (ISI and the army are very close after Pakistan army chief Kayani hand-picked Lt Gen Pasha as the ISI boss). Second, it was signaling to the world that the civilian government didn’t matter; what mattered was the army.

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Bombay attacks: India points the finger at Pakistan

November 28, 2008

India pointed an accusing finger at Pakistan yesterday as commandos fought suspected Islamist terrorists through the corridors of two of Bombay’s top hotels. Dozens of foreigners were still being held hostage or trapped in the buildings.

At least 125 people were killed and 327 wounded in Wednesday’s attacks on some of the city’s most high-profile buildings. Local hospitals and police said that the toll would rise further.

Nine foreigners were among the dead, including one Briton, a Japanese businessman, an Australian, a German and an Italian. Andreas Liveras, a 73-year-old British shipping tycoon, was shot dead moments after telling reporters that he was hiding in the basement of the Taj Mahal Palace.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office would not say how many British citizens were injured, trapped or being held hostage at the Taj Mahal and Oberoi hotels. Between 15 and 20 French nationals were inside.

Seven people were rescued from a residential complex that houses a Jewish centre. The Israeli Embassy said that ten of its citizens were being held hostage. A militant inside called a television channel to offer talks with the Government. He complained about rights abuses in Kashmir, over which India and Pakistan have fought two of their three wars since 1947.

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Mumbai: Death Toll Expected to Rise as End of Siege Appears Near

November 27, 2008

The crisis in Mumbai appeared to ease early Friday as Indian commandos scoured through two charred luxury hotels, searching for survivors of the bands of gunmen who unleashed two days of chaos here. A third group of gunmen, the remnants of well-organized squads of attackers, apparently remained holed up in a Jewish community center.
Amid early indications that the sieges were ending, fears were growing that the toll would rise past the 119 known dead. Late Thursday, smoke was still rising from one of the hotels and people who escaped reported stepping around bodies. Dozens of people, perhaps many more, remained trapped in the hotels, though it was uncertain if any were being held hostage by the heavily armed assailants. The wounded numbered some 300.

There remained much mystery around the group behind the attack, unusual in its scale, its almost theatrical boldness and its targeting of locales frequented by wealthy Indians and foreigners.

The New York Times

Two men who claimed to be among the gunmen called local television stations, demanding to speak with the government. They complained about the treatment of Muslims in India and about Kashmir, the disputed territory over which India and Pakistan have fought two wars.

“Are you aware how many people have been killed in Kashmir?” a caller who identified himself as Imran asked. “Are you aware how your army has killed Muslims?”

The men said they were Indian, but the attacks appeared to ratchet up tensions in an already volatile region: In a televised speech, India’s prime minister, Manmohan Singh, blamed forces “based outside this country” for the attacks in a thinly veiled accusation that Pakistan was involved.

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Mumbai attacks blamed on outsiders

November 27, 2008

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh suggested the group behind the terrorist attacks, which killed 125 people, was based outside the country.

CNN reporters said regular gun fire and blasts could be heard at the Oberoi and Taj Mahal hotels and a Jewish center in the city.

Police had some success with 10 hostages reportedly freed from the Oberoi despite a major fire.


Shortly after authorities said the siege had ended at the Taj Mahal hotel, two explosions were heard, similar to the six blasts heard earlier.

It was not immediately clear what caused any of the explosions. Witnesses said continuous gunfire could be heard at the hotel.

A fire from earlier billowed smoke through one of the hotel’s windows, as firefighters poured water over the plumes.

A few blocks away, at the Hotel Oberoi, a major fire raged Thursday night through one floor there, CNN’s sister network in India, CNN-IBN said.

The network reported 30 people were trapped, and said gunshots could be heard. Later, an explosion was heard from the hotel’s rear side.

At least three or four terrorists are still holding hostages in both the Taj Mahal and Oberoi hotels, British officials told CNN on Thursday.

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It’s here: The age of suicide fighters, global jihad

November 27, 2008

The clean-shaven, lithe young men ravaging Mumbai are suicide fighters — planned, armed and committed for long, hard-fought battles — not the shadowy hit-and-run suicide bombers with which India is so familiar.

The detonation of two taxis on Thursday night seemed only a diversion: The real teeth of the attack lay in small teams of highly trained commando-like fighters capturing large buildings, taking hostages and preparing for a long siege.

By Amit Baruah and Pramit Pal Chaudhuri, Hindustan Times

The Mumbai terror strikes fit neatly into the paradigm of jihad international. For the first time, the targets are no longer just random markets or innocent Indians, but Westerners: Americans, Britons, Israelis and Australians.

Mumbai 26/11, said a senior Indian intelligence official, was executed by the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiyyabba, a part of the larger global jihadi machine. Luxury hotels where westerners stay have become a popular target – assuring deeper fear and global publicity.

Hotels are now a choice jihadi target, said terrorism expert Rohan Gunaratna. That’s how terrorists struck at the Marriot in Islamabad in September, the heavily guarded Serena Hotel in Kabul in January.

Islamic Jihad militants carry a Qassam rocket in Khan Yunis. ...
Islamic Jihad militants carry a Qassam rocket in Khan Yunis. Israel has reacted to militant rocket fire by again sealing off the Gaza Strip, where officials said the territory’s sole power plant was forced to shut down because of the crippling blockade.(AFP/Said Khatib)

The switch from anonymous bombing or suicide bombing may be a product of three separate developments within the Islamicist terrorist system:

· Polls have shown a growing discontent about suicide bombings among mainstream Muslims, with Islamic clerics pointing to strong Quranic injunctions.

· Two, roadblocks, regular inspections and the difficulties in getting a car have made suicide bombs difficult. A direct frontal attack on a hotel entrace is much easier.

· “Bomb fatigue” undermines the publicity need that terrorist organizations live off. Long, bloody sieges, however, are perfect for sustained public attention and headline-grabbing.

A number of terrorist groups already have this ingrained in their modus operandi. The Abu Sayyaf group of the Philippines, for example, eschews suicide bombing but has a long record of assaulting tourist resorts, cruise ships and shopping malls.

The expertise that puts suicide fighters into action is not available to India’s home-grown terrorists. All indications point to a foray from Pakistan, a vital cruicible for the global jihadimachine. We are just their latest target.

Tourists watch as smoke billows out of the historic Taj Mahal ... 
Tourists watch as smoke billows out of the historic Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai. World leaders have expressed anger and horror after Islamist militant attacks in Mumbai left more than 100 people dead, as fears grew over foreign hostages.(AFP/Indranil Mukherjee)

Education Key to Fighting Future Threats

March 10, 2008

By James G. Zumwalt
The Washington Times
March 10, 2008

Consciousness of a threat is a factor of education. Unfortunately, some of our school systems, promoting a “peace in our time” mindset, reject educating the most innocent of innocents — our young children — that there is evil in the world that poses a real danger to those oblivious to it. The result is a “dumbing-down” of students about a threat to their future existence.
For example, World Net Daily reported seventh-grade students in a third of California schools are taught in a social studies book published by Teachers’ Curriculum Institute that “jihad” is, at best, an effort by Muslims “to take up worthy causes, such as funding medical research” and, at worst, simply Muslims fighting “to protect themselves from those who would do them harm.”

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In Pakistan: Jihad turning point?

February 5, 2008

By Claude Salhani
The Washington Times
February 5, 2008

Is the killing of a top al Qaeda commander by a CIA drone the beginning of a turning point in the war on terrorism?

The “sudden discovery” of such high-ranking members of Osama bin Laden’s terror network in Pakistan contradicts claims by the country’s president. “It has the potential to embarrass President Pervez Musharraf, who repeatedly said he would not sanction U.S. military action against al Qaeda members operating in his country,” stated a comprehensive

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Wanted: Inflammatory Spiritual Leader

September 6, 2007

James G. Zumwalt
The Washington Times
September 6, 2007

Several months ago, Shi’ite cleric Sheik Muqtada al-Sadr crawled out of hiding in Iran to incite followers to violence in Iraq. His rhetoric leaves one only to imagine the kind of job description that might have attracted Sheik al-Sadr and those of his ilk to their calling:

Wanted: Inflammatory spiritual leader to enrage listeners to become suicide bombers or to commit other acts of violence; candidate need not practice what he preaches; extensive religious training not required but claiming a father who was a spiritual leader is helpful; compensation determined by candidate’s ability to influence followers to tithe 20 percent of income — which candidate can, at his own discretion, use to distribute to the poor or retain for himself; candidate must be HIV-positive i.e., able to preach Hatred, Intolerance and Violence so as to effectively infect followers and spread this disease.Such is the world of the Islamofascist imam.Read the rest at: